What are the benefits of being a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC)?

A Federally Qualified Health Center or FQHC clinic serves as a safety net for underserved, uninsured, and homeless individuals and families in the US. As community-driven and non-profit healthcare providers, FQHC clinics are dedicated to serving communities with limited access to medical care, regardless of their ability to pay.


3 different types of FQHC clinics:

Health centers (HCs) are nonprofit public or private organizations that are funded by the Section 330 of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act. It caters to medically underserved community members including seasonal farm workers and migrants.

FQHC Look-Alikes or FQHCLAs are health centers that meet Health Center Program requirements but are not qualified to receive federal award or grant funding.

FQHC clinics are outpatient, low-cost clinics that receive grant funding under Section 330 of the Public Health Service Act. These clinics have specific reimbursement systems under Medicaid and Medicare.

For a health center to qualify for federal support, it must meet the following standards:

  • Provide services to everyone in their community, regardless of their ability to pay. These services include preventive health services, dental and mental health care, and even transportation services.
  • Develop a sliding fee program
  • Be a public or a nonprofit organization
  • Be community based
  • Have a board of directors composed mainly of their patients
  • Serve a medically underserved community or area
  • Deliver comprehensive primary care services
  • Have an ongoing quality assurance program  


What are the benefits of being an FQHC clinic?

In addition to the federal government funding, an FQHC clinic also has the following benefits:

  • Enhanced program in Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement
  • Up to $650,000 in new start money
  • Coverage in medical malpractice through the Federal Tort Claims Act
  • Eligible to purchase non-prescription and prescription medications for outpatients through the 340 B Federal Drug Pricing Program
  • Access to National Health Service Corps
  • Access to the Vaccine for Children program
  • Eligible for various other federal programs and grants
  • Access to on-site eligibility workers to provide Medicaid and CHIP enrollment services
  • Access to National Health Service Corps or NHSC dental, medical, and mental health providers


FQHC clinics help improve the quality of life for millions of their underserved patients. Their preventative care is cost efficient and allows many patients to have access to affordable immunizations, mammograms, Pap smears, health education, and other screenings. They also meet nationally accepted practice standards when it comes to managing chronic illnesses and the reduction of health disparities. The Institute of Medicine and the Government Accountability Office even recognize health centers’ standards when it comes to health screening and chronic condition management.


Hurtt Clinic as a Federally Qualified Health Center

Hurtt Family Health Clinic is a proud no health insurance clinic designated as a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC). As a low-cost clinic, we are able to provide all-inclusive services that address the health care needs of our community members in Orange County.  Our resources also make it easier extend help to poor communities. We continue to improve our services to deliver better health outcomes and healthcare solutions to our patients.

How Medi-Cal Helps Underserved Communities to Get Affordable Health Care

Has healthcare become an option instead of a necessity because of the cost it entails? Do you weigh its importance against more pressing financial needs? Fortunately, there’s a Medicaid program in California that offers low-cost or free health coverage for individuals and families with no health insurance or limited resources. This program is called Medi-Cal.


What is Medi-Cal?

Medi-Cal is a state and federal government financed Medicaid program in California. Since 1966, it has been offering healthcare services to low-income individuals, including seniors, children, pregnant women, and persons with disabilities. Even those with specific illnesses such as AIDS, HIV, or tuberculosis can apply for this program.


Community health clinics with Medi-Cal programs

California residents can go to community health clinics or Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) clinics to access affordable healthcare. These health clinics welcome everyone, especially those who are uninsured, underinsured, immigrants, and homeless. Patient driven and community based, each FQHC clinic is intended to remove common hurdles to healthcare in rural and urban areas where primary care is needed but limited.

One trustworthy FQHC clinic that’s been serving Orange County for years is Hurtt Family Health Clinic. It has medical mobile units and three fixed clinics located in the high-need areas of Tustin, Santa Ana, and Anaheim, CA. By mission and design, the services of Hurtt Family Health Clinic are tailored to fit the needs of their communities.

The clinic has Medi-Cal doctors in Orange County and multiple full-service medical, dental, chiropractic, mental health, vision, and health education facilities. It also partners with community resources in Orange County to continually update and improve the quality of the health care it provides, while keeping each service cost efficient.


Who is qualified for Medi-Cal programs?

While everyone is welcome to FQHC clinics, not everyone is qualified to apply for and receive the benefits of Medi-Cal programs. There are more than 90 eligibility categories to the program, each with its own rules and requirements. Here are some of the most common eligibility categories of the Medi-Cal program

  • Families with incomes at or below 138% of the Federal Poverty Level are eligible for Income-Based Medi-Cal
  • Families enrolled in free school lunches can be automatically considered for Medi-Cal
  • Individuals who qualify for Supplemental Security Income or SSI will automatically get SSI-Linked Medi-Cal
  • Aged & Disabled Federal Poverty Level Medi-Cal
  • California’s Working Disabled Program
  • Aged, Blind, and Disabled – Medically Needy Medi-Cal


How to apply for Medi-Cal programs?

You can apply for Medi-Cal programs in person at your nearest local county office. You will need to provide the following documentation:

  • State-issued ID with your photo
  • Resident alien card, if applicable
  • Proof of residency like a lease agreement
  • Latest 1040 IRS tax document
  • Proof of your current income


Other options include applying online via CoveredCA.com, or by calling Covered California’s office at (800) 300-1506.

Processing of application and eligibility can take 45 to 90 days, and is determined through the county offices of Medi-Cal.

Our Partnership with Orange County Rescue Mission

The Hurtt Family Health Clinic originated in 2001 as a mobile clinic providing free medical care to the homeless of Orange County. It is one of the most significant initiatives of the Orange County Rescue Mission – considered the most comprehensive private homeless services provider in the United States, as well as the largest non-profit, faith based organization in the country.

About Orange County Rescue Mission

The OCRM was founded in the early 1960s by Tech Sergeant Lewis Whitehead. His awakening to the homelessness problem in Orange County was spurred by an altercation he quelled among a group of people living under a bridge in an “undesirable part of the town”. TSgt. Whitehead, who was at that time managing the mess hall at the nearby Marine Corps Air Station in Tustin, found use for the waste food at the mess hall and gave it to the people living “under the bridge”.

From thereon, Sgt. Whitehead took the cause of the Orange County’s homeless to heart, bringing awareness about their plight wherever he went. He rallied support for their cause and his efforts culminated in the birth of the Orange County Rescue Mission.

The OCRM’s flagship transitional living facility, the Village of Hope, is located just minutes away from the Tustin Marine Base and was built solely from private funds donated to the OCRM.

Orange County Rescue Mission Programs

Of the donations received by the organization, 81% goes to programs benefitting the homeless, and only 19% goes to administration, fundraising and communications costs.

The OCRM has adopted several programs in support of the homeless in Orange County, including:

  • Shelter
  • Housing
  • Feeding
  • Clothing
  • Spiritual
  • Veterans support
  • Medical

OC Rescue Mission Medical Services

At the center of the OCRM’s medical program is the Hurtt Family Health Clinic. Established in 2000, the clinic started providing healthcare services to the homeless and uninsured of Orange Country through a mobile clinic. In 2008, the OCRM relocated the clinic to the Village of Hope, which remains one of the clinic’s three permanent sites to this day.

The clinic was named after the Hurtt family, who are longtime donors of the OCRM. The range of Orange County free clinic services it offers includes:

  • Primary medical care
  • Pediatric care
  • Chronic illness management
  • Health screenings
  • Women’s health care
  • Cancer screening
  • Nutrition counseling
  • Health promotion and education
  • Optometry services
  • Diabetes treatment

In addition to medical care services, the Hurtt Family Health Clinic also offers the following services:

  • Dental services
  • Mobile clinic for sick day treatments, health screenings, acute care, clinical evaluations and others
  • Laboratory services
  • Pharmacy services

As a no health insurance clinic, our low cost laboratory and pharmacy services are vital to the community. They help patients get the medications they need at low or zero costs through various programs, including:

  • Prescription drug assistance through the clinic’s free discount drug card which allows up to 75% savings on prescription drugs
  • Free medications through various grants and community partnerships
  • Assistance in completing applications for Prescription Assistance Programs

Over the years, the OCRM has helped thousands of the homeless in Orange County find new hope, rebuild their lives, and give their families a brighter future. The Hurtt Family Health Clinic has been one of its pillars in achieving its mission.

If you wish to donate to the OCRM or learn about how you may help the homeless of Orange County, visit the ORCM website. You may also call (714) 247-4300 or send an email to info@rescuemission.org.


Quality Healthcare for People with No Insurance

The cost of family healthcare today can be staggering, and this has become one of the biggest concerns in the country. Medical insurance provides a solution to the problem, easing some of the financial burdens for people in need of healthcare. Sadly, not everyone can afford to buy insurance, particularly those who belong to the lowest income groups, or are unemployed or homeless.

One of the most common remedies resorted to by uninsured patients is to go to hospital ERs to get treatment. Unlike in doctors’ offices where upfront payment is required, hospital ERs bill patients only after treatment has been given. However, the cost of ER services is generally much higher than doctors’ offices.

Additionally, looking after your health should not be confined to getting medical attention only when it is urgently needed. Healthcare should be a continuing and encompassing exercise, and must include management of acute and chronic illnesses, as well as preventative care to reduce the risks of acute diseases.

Not having insurance does not mean that you can’t have access to quality healthcare. There are several solutions that you can explore. One of the most viable ways to access affordable healthcare is by going to a community health clinic.

Finding a ‘No Health Insurance’ Clinic in Orange County

Community health clinics are found throughout the United States. Hurtt Family Health Clinic is one such provider, serving the Orange County community in three fixed locations (Tustin, Santa Ana and Anaheim) and several medical mobile sites.

Federally Qualified Health Centers, also known as FQHCs, receive funding from the US Department of Health and Human Services, as well as contributions from the community and civil society. These community health clinics are created primarily to serve low income groups, the uninsured or underinsured, the homeless, and anyone who has limited access to healthcare. Everyone, however, is welcome at these clinics.

Although federally funded, many FQHCs are the result of a true community effort. Hurtt Family Health Clinic started providing free medical care throughout Orange County in 2000 as part of the Orange County Rescue Mission. It got its present name in 2009 in honor of the Hurtt family, who was one of the OCRM’s longest running donors. In addition to federal funding, the clinic also works in partnership with various grants and community organizations to provide vital safety net services to the underserved and uninsured of Orange County.

Low Cost But High Quality Healthcare

A clinic such as ours provides an encompassing range of services at highly affordable costs to uninsured and underinsured patients. Hurtt Family Health Clinic has adopted a comprehensive care model that includes long term and full continuum programs. Some of the services offered at the clinic are:

  • Primary and preventative medical care
  • Dental services
  • Mental health services
  • Optometry services
  • Chiropractic care
  • Health education
  • Care and disease management

Low Cost Pharmacy Services

Among the benefits you can get from community health clinics are affordable pharmacy services. These include low cost and free medications, which the clinics are able to offer through coverage benefits from pharmaceutical companies, the federal 340B drug pricing programs, and various grants.

Hurtt Clinic’s free discount drug card allows up to 75% savings on prescription drugs. You can also get assistance in completing applications for Prescription Assistance Programs, which allow patients to obtain free or low-cost medicines directly from pharmaceutical companies.

If you want to know more about any of our services, make an appointment at any of our clinics in Tustin, Santa Ana or Anaheim.